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Sunday, February 25, 2024

Telangana Assembly Approves Legislation to Prohibit Hookah Parlours

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Hyderabad- The Telangana Legislative Assembly passed a bill on Monday, effectively banning hookah parlours across the state. The bill, which amends the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act of 2003, saw approval through a voice vote without any formal discussion.

Initiated by Legislative Affairs Minister D. Sridhar Babu on behalf of Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy, the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply, and Distribution) Telangana Amendment Bill 2024 aimed at addressing the perceived harm caused by hookah parlours, especially among the younger generation.

Minister Sridhar Babu outlined the urgency of the government’s decision, emphasizing the need to curtail the rising trend of hookah addiction among youth and college students. He cited concerns that organisers were exploiting the situation, leading to increased health risks associated with hookah smoking.

The minister highlighted the dangers of hookah smoking, noting that it is more harmful than cigarette smoking. He pointed out that the smoke from an hour-long hookah session, comprising about 200 puffs, is reportedly 100 times more harmful than cigarettes. The use of charcoal in hookahs contributes to the presence of carbon monoxide, heavy metals, and carcinogens, posing health hazards not only to hookah smokers but also to passive smokers.

The bill, approved by the Cabinet following the Chief Minister’s decision to ban hookah parlours, underscores the government’s commitment to public health and addresses the potential health risks posed by these establishments in public places.

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